AUBURN, Ala. (EETV) - Auburn women's basketball earned their second straight SEC victory last night against Vanderbilt with a tight score of 63-60.

The Tigers, 13-11, 4-8 SEC, fought off a second-half surge from the Commodores (6-20, 2-10 SEC) as Vanderbilt had chewed away Auburn's 20 point halftime lead down to just two points in the final minutes.

Sophomore Daisa Alexander scored five points in the final fifty-two seconds and hit a jumper with 19 seconds left to play and with five seconds left caused a turnover that sealed the game for the Tigers as Vanderbilt was driving to the basket.

"We held on," said Auburn head coach Terri Williams-Flourney, "we knew that Vandy was a 3-point shooting team. We knew our first goal was to defend the 3-point line, and we didn't do a great job when they made their run especially, but we held on. We kept fighting and we got the win."

Three players scored in double figures for Auburn. Freshman Unique Thompson finished with a game high 16 points, Alexander with 12, and Janiah McKay finished with 11 and a team high five assists.

Vanderbilt finished 9-of-26 from 3-point range (34.6%) and shot 41.9 percent (18-of-43) for the game. But the Tigers took 25 more shots than the Commodores, hitting 24-of-68 (35.3%), mostly thanks to 24 Vanderbilt turnovers that Auburn turned into 21 points. Vanderbilt out-rebounded Auburn 39-30.

Vanderbilt turned the ball over 15 times in the first half which Auburn was able to translate into 18 points, the Tigers held a 41-24 lead at the break. The Tigers shot 47 percent in the opening half and held the Commodores, the SEC's top 3-point shooting team, to just nine made shots and three shots from beyond the arc.

But Vanderbilt came out hot to start the third quarter opening the second half on an 11-0 run and cutting the Tiger lead down to just six.

A 49-43 lead heading into the fourth quarter jumped back to 11 as Auburn opened on a 5-0 run. But as both teams struggled to score, Vanderbilt chipped away, cutting the lead to two points at 58-56 on an Erin Whalen 3-pointer with just under a minute left. The teams then mostly traded free throws down the stretch with Alexander scoring the Tigers' final five points.

With the Tigers leading 62-60 and spending their final timeout to advance the ball to the frontcourt with just under seven seconds left, Auburn would turn it over on the inbounds pass. Whalen appeared to be driving for the tying basket, but Alexander sprinted down the court, stole the ball from Whalen and was fouled with 1.3 seconds left. She made one, and the Commodores were unable to get a shot off at the buzzer.

The next game for the Tigers will be on Thursday night as they host No.13 Missouri, wrapping up their three game home stand with top off slated for 6 p.m. CT. This will also be the annual Play4Kay pink game.



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